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About Fund

The Unity through Knowledge Fund (UKF) was established in 2007 by the Ministry of Science and Education on behalf of the government of the Republic of Croatia. The Fund operated within the Science and Technology Project I, which was financed by a loan of the World Bank Nr. 7320-HR. From its establishment until May 2011, the Fund financed 91 scientific and technological projects. A total of 7,8 million EUR has been invested in the activities of the Fund. The Ministry of Science and Education (through the World bank loan and from the State budget) ensured nearly 5,1 million Euro, i.e. 65% of the total necessary value for the implementation of the project, while the remaining funds have been ensured by international scientific-research institutions (1,2 million EUR), the private sector (756.526,43 EUR) and Croatian public scientific-research institutions (845.750,54 EUR).

Thanks to the use of systematic and transparent selection methodology, the Unity through Knowledge Fund supported high-quality scientific-research groups that have been additionally strengthened with the support of the Fund by receiving the necessary knowledge and competence to enable participation in very competitive call for proposals of the European and international scientific communities. Newly acquired knowledge and, skills as well as networking with excellent world scientific-research institutions, enabled scientist groups a far more competitive approach and herewith a favorable capacity for attracting European and other international financial sources, especially within the Seventh Framework Program of the European Union (FP7) for research and technological development.

The success of the projects financed by the Unity through Knowledge Fund was additionally confirmed by the publication of scientific articles in the most prestigious international scientific journals such as Nature, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (USA), Nature Reviews Genetics, Journal of the American Chemical Society and Science. Other important aspect of UKF programs was significant transfer of knowledge and technology into the Croatian scientific-research and economic sectors that has been made possible due to cooperation with leading international scientific-research institutions. The transferred knowledge and technology are of vital importance for the further development of Croatian innovative potential, and with this, of a more competitive economy.

During the phase of Preparation Advance of Proposed Second Science and Technology Project, the Fund opened call for proposals for the Crossing border grant, “Cooperability program” and “Research in industry and academia“ grant “Young researchers and professionals program”. Within the Second Science and Technology Project (STP II) for which the Loan Agreement No. 8258-HR was signed on May, 22, 2013, 18 projects were contracted worth 2,95 million euro.

Starting February 19th 2014, the UKF is established within and administered by CSF pursuant to the Act on the Croatian Science Foundation (Official Gazette No. 117/2001, 46/2009, 92/2010, 78/2012) Article 19 that also regulated the transfer of the UKF from MSE to CSF.

The Fund will continue supporting excellent collaborative research with Croatian scientists living abroad and with leading international scientific institutions, fostering professional advancement of young researchers (at doctoral and postdoctoral level), fostering industry and academia collaboration as well as improving conditions in private and public R&D sector to raise absorption capacity for EU funds, especially Structural and Horizon 2020.

The Fund will maintain high quality and transparent selection procedure. This has been identified as one of crucial elements for significant results that UKF projects financed within STP I have accomplished in attracting resources from EU funds. The projects by UKF should exhibit excellence and a significant contribution to Croatian society and economy. They will be selected on the subject of recommendations of anonymous and internationally recognized experts-evaluators.

Special instruments that shall be financed within Second Science and Technology Project lead to achievement of UKF’s goal. These instruments are: research project, post-doctorate research, doctorate research, training, industrial PhD, short-term visit, long-term visit, research equipment, conference, consulting, development of human resources in S&T and overhead. The UKF is cofinancing projects, if a minimum of 20 percent is provided from other sources. 

UKF programs are primary oriented to human resources development through various instruments (mobility, transfer of knowledge, networking, collaboration, etc), so the continuation of these measures shall be ensured through Structural funds. Within the framework of Proposed Second Science and Technology Project, UKF will modify its current programs and develop new to be financed from Structural funds.

Total funds envisioned for UKF component within Second Science and Technology Project are 4,77 million EUR.

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